Dimensions of quality of life of the elderly by reviewing previous research

A dramatic increase in the number of the elderly is a fact which is referred as aging tsunami or elderly overpopulation in the future years. In the view of World Health Organization, as the elderly population grows, we will have to face the crisis of aging population and fundamental challenge in 21st century.In recent decades in the field of Psychology, Medicine, and Social Sciences, extensive research has been conducted on the life quality of the elderly. The life quality of the group as a social issue the core of which is formed by health, is investigated by mental/objective and individual/collective and physical/social dimensions. But since the life quality and its indicators can be regaeded as a complex, multidimensional and vogue concept, because for different people the importance and value of each of life dimension varies, seeing contradictions and differences as well as common points among studies necessitates a meta-analysis, revision and combination of findings in order to achieve a common analysis over the life quality of the elderly and its various dimensions.


Exploring and revealing the logical connection of influential factors and key indicators through comparative study of twenty (scientific & research) articles by measuring the effect size of factors and independent variables toward achieving new and more comprehensive results and removing future impediments and improving the life quality of the elderly.


In response to the main question of the present study, by measuring the effect size of factors and variables having greatest impact on the life quality of the elderly, three social, cultural indicators and population variables related to independent variables, optimism training and life expectancy (83%), non-institutional social participation (77%), physical and mental health (75%), religious attitudes and religiosity (76%) were were found to have a great influence. Social support, social solidarity, life satisfaction, and underlying factors (demographics), in particular age and qualification have been moderately effective.


According to World Health Organization, life quality is quite subjective which is not observable by the others and will be based on an understanding of the various aspects of the life and should be studied by qualitative and quantitative methods to examine the influential factors. Among studied researches, only one qualitative research study (from phenomenological point of view) has studied the life quality of the elderly, and most of studies has been done quantitatively. In previous studies, most influential mental factors (mental dimension) were the life quality, and as most of the investigated studies have addressed the mental dimension of the life quality with different indicators affected on the life style of the elderly, consequently the objective dimensions of life quality have been neglected in most of studies, in case of any distinction between objective and subjective indicators in the life quality of the elderly, the objective and subjective indictors have not been investigated separately in conclusions.
The elderly and aging threshold in 70-75 years old or more is completely conventional and depends on individual differences and changes throughout social life. For the purpose of studying the life quality of the elderly to achieve more accurate results and analysis, it is necessary to consider them in special age groups, e.g., younger elderlies whose age range is 60-74 years old and elderlies with the age range of 75-90 years old.

Article Type:
Research/Original Article
Social Welfare Quarterly, Volume:19 Issue: 75, 2020
123 - 181
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